No Drug Has No Side-Effects, But Cannabis's may be Less Severe
Consider side-effects that are tolerable, and those that make you miserable.
There's been no known drug in pharmaceutical history that doesn't manifest side-effects in some percentage of the population taking it. A side-effects-less drug doesn't exist, and for a great deal that depend on drug treatments to maintain homeostasis, this can cause severe problems living their day to day lives.
This is one of the reasons cannabis is becoming so popular for medical patients. As the desire in searching for alternative treatments that create less or less-severe side-effects rises, cannabis is being looked at more closely and the discoveries surrounding it hold tremendous potential.
Is a Medication Making You Seemingly Sicker?
There's people taking opioids for severe chronic pain, chemo therapy for cancer, anticonvulsants for seizures, antidepressants for those suffering from mood disorders, and the list goes on. With every one of these examples, it's too easy to list the common side-effects.
Opioids can lead to addiction, constipation, drowsiness, and death in extreme cases. Chemo can cause fatigue, nausea, loss of appetite, and infection among many others. Anticonvulsants can create headaches, vomiting, fatigue and tremors. Anti-depressants can cause nausea, weight gain, erectile-dysfunction, insomnia...
Though we may need our medication to cope with an illness that's debilitating, the side-effects can all too often create a paradox in our lives. I've met people in my own experience that have questioned themselves before taking a pill: Do I want to live with fibromyalgia today or do I risk feeling nauseous or sleepy? Do I want to take my anticonvulsant and feel spacey; out-of-touch with reality, or do I not take it so I can feel like myself but risk having a seizure...
Do Side-Effects Lead to Taking Yet Another Medication?
And as a patient delves deeper into the pharmaceutical rabbit hole, they discover that there are other medications that can fight the side-effects of their first medication. But does the second medication create a newfound side-effect that requires yet another medication? Does the second medication inhibit your daily activities -- for example, someone taking a nausea medication after chemo may find that it suppresses appetite rather than increases it, thus leading to unhealthy weight loss which can lead to other health problems.
For the great majority, downing pill after pill just doesn't seem right - it isn't natural. And while we're all extremely grateful for the advances in medical science that save lives and help those with illnesses, it's preferable to reach a point where we no longer need medication to maintain homeostasis.
While medicines such as those listed above certainly do carry the potential to improve lives, it's when their side-effects disrupt our day-to-day tasks and lead to using other meds that we must evaluate whether we're improving our health or simply maintaining our existence without reaching our full potential.
Would You Consider Cannabis as a Supplement or Alternative?
The research surrounding cannabis continues, and all the anecdotal evidence of the plant's potential is being confirmed through scientific studies and their discoveries.
It's true that there are patients that need their medication - whether it be to physically live, mentally remain stable, or simply maintain homeostasis. However, patients are often hesitant to grab another prescription from their doctor to beat the side-effects of their treatment. This is where many have considered cannabis.
- It's an all-natural plant.
- It's been used as a medicine for centuries in various cultures.
- It's never been the cause of death.
- It's versatile - you can smoke it, vape it, eat it, drink it, apply it, use it sublingually.
Discover More: 10 Undesirable Side-Effects of Cannabis + Remedies
While there are side-effects to cannabis, they can be controlled to a certain level, and they're far less severe than other choices out there. When I say you can "control" the side-effects of cannabis to a certain level, I'm getting at the fact you can control how much you take and what strain you're taking.
It's common that beginners accidentally inhale or ingest too much of the plant when they begin using it as a treatment, and this can lead to any of the side-effects cannabis is known to produce. A beginner might also choose the wrong type of strain for the results they're after - there are indica, sativa, and hybrid strains - there are high CBD strains with low THC and vice versa. Those seeking pain relief may want to try high-CBD strains while those seeking nausea relief may want a low THC hybrid or indica. Still, some prefer a high-THC sativa to reduce anxiety or depression.
It all depends on the relief you're seeking, your weight and metabolism, as well as body chemistry and other prescriptions you may be taking.
It is when you are able to find the right strain in the right amount that it becomes seemingly possible no side-effects are felt when using cannabis. Don't let this process discourage you, it's simpler than it sounds and just requires practice.
So - would you consider cannabis as a supplement to your current medications or perhaps as an alternative? Leave us your feedback below and spread the word on whether cannabis has been helpful or not.